I recently went on a trip and booked a hotel room based solely on the pictures. It was a gorgeous room with a rustic vibe. I was super excited because the room was a casita with a large balcony. I couldn't wait to sit under the stars bundled up, looking for the moon and watching the light play in the sky at sunrise with coffee in my hands.
Sadly, when I arrived around 6 pm, I was disappointed. It was not the room of my expectations nor my heart; it didn't even have a balcony! Although the room was okay, it didn't feel welcoming, and it smelled a bit musty when I walked in. The ceilings hung low, it was dark, and the shower didn't have a light in or around it; it felt like I was showering in the shadows. It was a large room meant to fit more than one person. However, it felt like the place was closing in on me. I called the front desk and explained my situation, but they couldn't entertain different accommodations until the morning.
I stayed in my room and hoped for a better tomorrow.
The morning came; I headed down to the front desk at 6:55 am as they opened at 7 am and asked for anything that felt more spacious, perhaps one with a fireplace. By 9 am. I hadn't heard whether or not I would receive another room. I went to grab breakfast and then headed back to the room to pack all my belongings.
But this time as I entered my room, I felt it's magic unfold. I saw the morning light streaming in through the windows, and I felt the room offer its warmth.
In front of my door were two metal chairs. I decided to sit outside in the cool fresh air. The sun warmed my skin. As I took a moment to enjoy this gift from the sun, I noticed I couldn't hear the sounds of the roads, and I realized the location of my room provided me with a substantial amount of privacy. As I listened to the cacophony of bird songs, I felt my heart burst open. It wasn't the large balcony I had hoped for, but it held all the things that gave me joy!
Tosha Silver stated in her book Outrageous Openness "If you align in any moment with the flow of life as it presents itself, all will unfold in the right way at the right time with a certain spontaneity and ease."
I am constantly reminded to surrender and allow myself to move with the flow of life, and this experience provided me with what I needed - a shift in perception.
This situation is an analogy for my life. Even when I am in the depths of my world coming apart, I know I will make it to the other side. First, however, I need to get out of my way. After that, it is about releasing expectations, allowing life to flow, and feeling the joy of the mundane and present.
What does feeling into joy mean? APA Dictionary defines joy as "n. a feeling of extreme gladness, delight, or exaltation of the spirit arising from a sense of well-being or satisfaction."
It means remembering a memory or feeling where you felt a sense of fulfillment and satisfaction with your life, even if it is just a moment. We all have had moments of joy. Perhaps it is fleeting, but if we can tap into that one point, recall it and feel into it, we will have that moment of reprieve, that pause, and perhaps a shift in perception.